4200 and counting

The numbers of people participating in Populace continue to grow.  The numbers of Populace sculptures being made is also growing.    We are now at 4200 and counting with many events planned to make this installation a beautiful community project.  Almost half of the way there!

It’s Our Year

Welcome 2017! Populace started right at the beginning by attending the New Year’s Eve celebrations at Parliament Hill.


The fleurs de lis, the rose and feather make up the three sculptural narratives in Populace.

There will be 3000 of each for a total of 9000 sculptures to be installed at the Canadian Museum of Nature http://www.nature.ca.

The sculptures were also handled by many interesting Canadians at the midnight.  They are going to be quite the show themselves from June 17, 2017 – September 4, 2017.

Holding a Rose
Canadians holding a rose


Thanks West!

Rural Ottawa is getting in on the making of Populace sculptures too! Students in 6 art classes at West Carleton Secondary School participated in 3 days of workshops, making 135 pieces all together. The students have really gotten involved in the project, excited to have their work on display for the public to see next summer.  Thank you to the enthusiastic teaching team at West Carleton for your support of the project and your dedication to your students in offering them this opportunity.  A big thank you to the students for your artistic contribution to this mega installation of public art.  You are part of history now!  It was wonderful working with you!

  • Kirstin Davidson, Populace Coordinator

Thanks Glebe!

Students at Glebe Collegiate Institute made roses and feathers for Populace 2017!  One student remarked, “I never knew I could make something so beautiful with my own two hands.”  Isn’t that wonderful?!  We love the growth we see in the students and we are enriched by the smiles that spread across their faces when they stand back and look at their finished pieces.  When I began, I imagined that members of The Ottawa Guild of Potters would primarily make the installation.  Hundreds of sculptures later, many of which were made by high school students like these, I declare myself to have been quite wrong!  This project is growing our clay community, connecting over 500 people so far and counting!  So, thank you Glebe students and your wonderful teacher for being a part of this group of makers.  You did a beautiful job!

-Kirstin Davidson, Populace Coordinator

Thanks ASH!

All Saints Catholic High School in Kanata made beautiful Populace roses, feathers and lilies on a cold day in December.  The grade 9 “Exploring Aboriginal Art and Culture” class created some stunning feathers and learned the art of stretching clay so that the long feather template would fit.  The grade 9 art class were pros at rose making.  They worked together in teams, sharing templates and helping each other with their assembly of the rose.  The oldest group – the grade 12 art class – took on the challenge of making the fleurs de lis.  Although it has fewer pieces than the rose, it is built upside down, not something for the spatial-relations challenged!  However, they were all successful builders who created fine examples of the lily, recognizing the French who were here at the time of Confederation.  It was so interesting to see the progress that each student made with their respective pieces.  Those who seemed hesitant at first produced fine, considered work. Those who jumped right in produced spirited and expressive pieces.  They are eager to see the finished garden next spring, as are we!  Thank you All Saints!

Catching Up the Project

Anticipating another making day tomorrow with the studio potters and friends at the Gladstone Clayworks.  http://www.gladstoneclayworks.ca.  Here are two short videos capturing out experience last making day in November.  December brings with it many opportunities for Populace community outreach at local high schools and studios in the region.  It allows us to contemplate on the nature of community art and how clay is bringing new experiences and skills to young and old alike throughout Ottawa.  In January we explore new territories – heading out to Kingston and Deep River.  Maybe your community?


Canadian Museum of Nature

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Our site partner, the Canadian Museum of Nature, invited us to participate in a day-long, public symposium called Nature Scene.  We were invited to present a making workshop to the guests of the symposium in a two-hour art and nature session.  Kirstin, Hilde and Kim set up three making tables and had many new participants enjoy making a rose for Populace.  33 beautiful flowers were created at the Museum.  Thank you to Ottawa 2017 for providing pins and a banner for our public making sessions!

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Celebrating Canada’s past, transforming its future, & connecting ceramic arts with the community. Notre mission est de célébrer le passé du Canada, transformer son avenir et tisser des liens entre l’art de la céramique et la communauté.